In 493 B.C., at a time of serious famine, they ordered the building of a temple to the Greek triad Demeter, Dionysus and Persephone, who were identified with the old Roman divinities Ceres, Liber and Libera: Apollo must have come with or before the books themselves, though his temple was not built till 433 B.C.: Mercury followed, the representative of `Epµns 'E,uuroXaaos, Asclepius was brought from Epidaurus to the Tiber island in 293 B.C., and Dis and Proserpina, with their strange chthonic associations and night ritual, probably from Tarentum in 249 B.C. With new deities came new modes of worship: the graecus ritus, in which, contrary to Roman usage, the worshipper's head was unveiled, and the lectisternium, an elaborate form of the "banquet of the gods."
It may have been he who, as a "presbyter christiani ritus," conducted negotiations with Valens before the battle of Adrianople; but that he headed a previous embassy asking for leave for the Visigoths to settle on Roman soil, and that he then, for political motives, professed himself a convert to the Arian creed, favoured by the emperor, and drew with him the whole body of his countrymen - these and other similar stories of the orthodox church historians appear to be without foundation.
Under the same cardinal prefect is found that section of the Propaganda which deals with matters concerning oriental rites (Congregatio specialis pro negotiis ritus Orientalis), the object of which is indicated by its name.
The popes, then, or at least the more politic of them, have been content to lay down as the condition of reunion no more than the acceptance of the distinctive dogmas of the Roman Catholic Church, especially the supremacy and infallibility of the pope; the ritus of the Uniat Oriental Churches - liturgies and liturgical languages, ecclesiastical law and discipline, marriage of priests, beards and costume, the monastic system of St Basil - they have been content for the most part to leave untouched.
The attempts of Pius IX., who in 1862 established the Congregatio de propaganda fide pro negotiis ritus orientalis, to interfere in a Romanizing sense with the rites of the Armenians and Chaidaeans (by the bulls Reversurus of 1867 and Cum Ecclesiastica of 1869) led to a schism; and Leo XIII., who more than all his predecessors interested himself in the question of reunion, reverted to and developed the wiser 1 The Latin word ritus covers not only the ordinary meaning of the modern English word " rite," i.e.